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Old 19th August 2021, 06:49 AM   #41
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Originally Posted by PhantomWolf View Post
Well, the first thought is that you are begging the question that the war in Afghanistan was a loss. That would indicate that the war had a specific goal that was failed to be achieved.
Setting aside the nation-building (which Biden has attempted to ret-con), a key and oft-stated objective was the removal of the Taliban from power.

The Taliban returning to power would tend to indicate a failure to meet that objective.

Last edited by mumblethrax; 19th August 2021 at 06:53 AM.
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Old 19th August 2021, 06:56 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by mumblethrax View Post
Setting aside the nation-building (which Biden has attempted to ret-con), a key and oft-stated objective was the removal of the Taliban from power.

The Taliban returning to power would tend to indicate a failure to meet that objective.
Exactly without the Taliban there would have been no base for Alqueda.
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Old 19th August 2021, 07:24 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by PhantomWolf View Post
This sentence makes no sense in the English language.

However, if there are currently no Islamic Terrorist Groups operating out of Afghanistan and the objective was to stop them from doing so, then isn't that a success.
A partial success, as you go on to explain very clearly.

Originally Posted by PhantomWolf View Post
If your argument is that there is potential for Islamic Terrorist groups to set up shop there in the future, then how would you propose a solution to this short of the US and its allies remaining in Afghanistan as an occupying force indefinitely?
Here's the rub. If Afghanistan becomes a terrorist finishing school in short order, then the mission will have been a failure - twenty years, hundreds of thousands of lives (many thousands of them American), trillions of dollars and we're back to square one again.
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Old 19th August 2021, 07:37 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by The Don View Post
A partial success, as you go on to explain very clearly.



Here's the rub. If Afghanistan becomes a terrorist finishing school in short order, then the mission will have been a failure - twenty years, hundreds of thousands of lives (many thousands of them American), trillions of dollars and we're back to square one again.
The only thing to do then is make the country a Huge gravel Pit, we were Kind this Time, but the Afghans should have learned the lessons of 9/11/2001.
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Old 19th August 2021, 07:45 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by PhantomWolf View Post
If your argument is that there is potential for Islamic Terrorist groups to set up shop there in the future, then how would you propose a solution to this short of the US and its allies remaining in Afghanistan as an occupying force indefinitely?
Bomb the shop.

Say an international terrorist organization puts its HQ in Afghanistan. What happens if every time that happens, someone drops a bomb on their HQ, and on the Taliban's HQ? I think the Taliban would decide pretty quick that hosting international terrorists is counter-productive to their goal of self-rule and hegemony in their corner of the world.
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Old 19th August 2021, 07:51 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by mumblethrax View Post
Setting aside the nation-building (which Biden has attempted to ret-con), a key and oft-stated objective was the removal of the Taliban from power.
How can you set aside that, what does a removed from power Taliban with no nation to replace them look like, and how is it different from what is happening now?
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Old 19th August 2021, 07:52 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by Crazy Chainsaw View Post
Exactly without the Taliban there would have been no base for Alqueda.
How do you keep the Taliban out with out a nation to replace them?
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Old 19th August 2021, 07:55 AM   #48
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Do most agree that the bi-partisan neoconservative establishment war machine has suffered a setback here? Does anyone see that setback as a bad thing?
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Old 19th August 2021, 07:57 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Bomb the shop.

Say an international terrorist organization puts its HQ in Afghanistan. What happens if every time that happens, someone drops a bomb on their HQ, and on the Taliban's HQ? I think the Taliban would decide pretty quick that hosting international terrorists is counter-productive to their goal of self-rule and hegemony in their corner of the world.
That kind of approach is exactly what terrorist organisations want and need to drive recruitment. Every time an "innocent civilian" is killed in one of those raids, the lie that the West is out to destroy Islam is reinforced.
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Old 19th August 2021, 08:01 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
How can you set aside that [...]
Rhetorically.
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Old 19th August 2021, 08:06 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by mumblethrax View Post
Rhetorically.
So basically it was doomed to failure. We can't keep the Taliban out without a stable government to take the place, and we can't build a stable government.

Which was my point, nation building is the only way to keep the Taliban out of power long term. The goals from the start were unattainable.
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Old 19th August 2021, 09:26 AM   #52
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Originally Posted by Crazy Chainsaw View Post
Your Thoughts is the GOP responsible for the loss of the war in Afghanistan?
Because they adopted Misinformation, and attacked debunkers, rejecting logic reason and Science for Political gain?
That helped the Taliban win the Propaganda war years ago.
Loose lips sink ships and loose wars.
Your thoughts Please.
The process began last year in Feburary with the Trump admins arrange a deal no attack on International Forces in return for Total withdrawl. It did begin with them.
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Old 19th August 2021, 10:17 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by Crazy Chainsaw View Post
The only thing to do then is make the country a Huge gravel Pit, we were Kind this Time, but the Afghans should have learned the lessons of 9/11/2001.
That they'll pay with their lives if citizens of Saudi Arabia commit a terrorist attack against the United States?
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Old 19th August 2021, 10:32 AM   #54
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Originally Posted by The Don View Post
That kind of approach is exactly what terrorist organisations want and need to drive recruitment. Every time an "innocent civilian" is killed in one of those raids, the lie that the West is out to destroy Islam is reinforced. : mad :
The lie is a conspiracy theory. Everything reinforces it. And when there's nothing to reinforce it, the instigators will make stuff up.

And honestly, I don't care how many misguided fanatics are convinced the West is out to destroy Islam. The more of their plots that are focused on hiding their HQ from retaliation, the fewer of their plots are focused on triggering retaliation in the first place.

And the context here is the risk fo the Taliban hosting international terrorists. I think the Taliban's main goal is not defense of Islam against western extermination. I think their main goal is self-rule and hegemony in their corner of the world. Being landlords whose tenants pay the rent in retaliatory airstrikes is counter-productive to that goal. I think they'd rather not have the tenants, then invest in the conspiracy theory.
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Old 19th August 2021, 10:34 AM   #55
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
So basically it was doomed to failure. We can't keep the Taliban out without a stable government to take the place, and we can't build a stable government.

Which was my point, nation building is the only way to keep the Taliban out of power long term. The goals from the start were unattainable.
There's always the more limited goal of simply encouraging the Taliban to stay out of the international terrorism game. You think the Taliban are gonna be all that anxious to host another Al Qaeda or ISIS in the next ten years?
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Old 19th August 2021, 10:54 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
So basically it was doomed to failure. We can't keep the Taliban out without a stable government to take the place, and we can't build a stable government.

Which was my point, nation building is the only way to keep the Taliban out of power long term. The goals from the start were unattainable.
That's fine, but it has nothing to do with what I said.
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Old 19th August 2021, 11:40 AM   #57
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
So basically it was doomed to failure. We can't keep the Taliban out without a stable government to take the place, and we can't build a stable government.

Which was my point, nation building is the only way to keep the Taliban out of power long term. The goals from the start were unattainable.
You can't build a nation if you don't have the building material in the first place.
Just like you can't build a house if there is no foundation. There is no foundation in Afghan culture to build a nation as we understand it. They had 20 years to establish a stable government and failed to do so because of the culture of tribal and family loyalty first and systemic corruption.
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Old 19th August 2021, 11:42 AM   #58
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Interesting piece exploring why pro-war voices were treated as the "neutral" position.

Quote:
The mainstream media has an obligation to hold the Biden administration accountable for its errors. But we also have an obligation to contextualize the events of the day. As is, the news industry is helping hawks recast an indictment of martial adventurism into an object lesson in the hazards of military restraint.
https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021...ithdrawal.html

It's truly maddening that after 20 years of failure, the pro-war advocates still somehow seem to have the loudest voices in nearly every major news outlet.
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Old 19th August 2021, 02:25 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by ponderingturtle View Post
So basically it was doomed to failure. We can't keep the Taliban out without a stable government to take the place, and we can't build a stable government.

Which was my point, nation building is the only way to keep the Taliban out of power long term. The goals from the start were unattainable.
No they attainable if the people, hated the Taliban enough to want to form a Stable Government, just the Taliban had a more effective Propaganda machine.
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Old 19th August 2021, 04:09 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by Crazy Chainsaw View Post
Exactly without the Taliban there would have been no base for Alqueda.
This quite simply isn't true.

While Al Qadea was based in Sudan before it moved to Afghanistan in 1996, Bin Laden was already well-known and respected in Afghanistan due to his work during the war against the Russians. They had also already been based in Afghanistan after Saudi Arabia expelled them in 1991, but after a year there during which he helped broker a peace deal in the Civil War between the warring Mujahideen factions, he moved their base to Sudan.

They made the move back to Afghanistan in 1996 during the Taliban uprising, but during a period where the Taliban had just suffered a serious defeat. It was not until then that he met Mullah Mohammed Omar and became friends with him.

The reality is that even had there had been no Taliban, Bin Laden would have been welcomed back into Afghanistan by the Mujahideen government just the same.
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Old 19th August 2021, 04:19 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by Crazy Chainsaw View Post
No they attainable if the people, hated the Taliban enough to want to form a Stable Government, just the Taliban had a more effective Propaganda machine.
No, again not really true.

The Afghani Government suffered from a lot of issues that caused their downfall.

Corruption was a huge part, many of the areas that fell quickly did so simply because the Taliban offered huge sums of money for the authorities to join them rather than to fight them, and due to the corruption, and in the case of many police and soldiers, the lack of payments from Kabul, they did exactly that.

On top of that, Kabul has never been able to project its power very well. The only group that has really even had moderate success in that has been the Taliban, but even then it has been exercised via local Mullahs and leaders rather than directly from Kabul. The way that Afghanistan power structures [barely] work is entirely different from how a western nation does, and trying to build a nation there is really an impossible dream. The best anyone will ever be able to do is to install a loyal provincial leadership and provide them with something that will keep them loyal. Western Ideals fall apart at this point, the Taliban will always have the advantage via their Religion.

So no, it's not an attainable goal. This is a lesson that outside nations have not learned in thousands of years of attempts to contol Afghanistan.
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Old 19th August 2021, 04:53 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
The lie is a conspiracy theory. Everything reinforces it. And when there's nothing to reinforce it, the instigators will make stuff up.

And honestly, I don't care how many misguided fanatics are convinced the West is out to destroy Islam. The more of their plots that are focused on hiding their HQ from retaliation, the fewer of their plots are focused on triggering retaliation in the first place.

And the context here is the risk fo the Taliban hosting international terrorists. I think the Taliban's main goal is not defense of Islam against western extermination. I think their main goal is self-rule and hegemony in their corner of the world. Being landlords whose tenants pay the rent in retaliatory airstrikes is counter-productive to that goal. I think they'd rather not have the tenants, then invest in the conspiracy theory.
It's a huge mistake to label the Taliban as a whole as terrorists. To the Afghan locals Taliban means religious.
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Old 19th August 2021, 05:09 PM   #63
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
It's a huge mistake to label the Taliban as a whole as terrorists. To the Afghan locals Taliban means religious.
It also means freedom from outsiders.
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Old 19th August 2021, 05:10 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
The lie is a conspiracy theory. Everything reinforces it. And when there's nothing to reinforce it, the instigators will make stuff up.

And honestly, I don't care how many misguided fanatics are convinced the West is out to destroy Islam. The more of their plots that are focused on hiding their HQ from retaliation, the fewer of their plots are focused on triggering retaliation in the first place.

And the context here is the risk fo the Taliban hosting international terrorists. I think the Taliban's main goal is not defense of Islam against western extermination. I think their main goal is self-rule and hegemony in their corner of the world. Being landlords whose tenants pay the rent in retaliatory airstrikes is counter-productive to that goal. I think they'd rather not have the tenants, then invest in the conspiracy theory.
I'm about to piss off a bunch of Americans, but oh well. This is the exact kind of thinking that caused 9/11 in the first place.

Bin Laden and Al Qaeda were happy just to take on what they saw as corrupt Governments in Islamic States such as Yemen, Algeria, and Egypt until the US stuck its nose into their affairs. It wasn't until after Egyptian Islamic Jihad's failed attempt of overthrowing the Egyptian Government with the assassination attempt on President Hosni Mubarak that things changed. Despite his horrendous human rights record and massive corruption, Mubarak was an ally of the US and the US didn't take kindly to EIJ's attempt to remove him. They demanded that Sudan kick them and anyone associated with them out of Sudan. Sudan did kick out EIJ, but that wasn't enough and the US State Department demanded that Bin Laden and Al Qaeda be kicked out as well. Despite being owed huge amounts of money by the Sudanese government (and probably also because of it) for construction works Bin Laden had undertaken in his time there, they booted him out with little more than the shirt on his back, and so when he returned to Afghanistan, he did so angry at the US for once more forcing him to leave his home and lifestyle.

What didn't help matters was that Saudi Arabia has convinced him to leave in the first place by telling him that his vocal opposition to the US "occupation" of Suadi Arabia had lead to the US wanting to kill him to silence him. It wasn't true of course, and the Saudis had used it as a way to get him out of the country due to him being an embarrassment and agitator, but that didn't really matter as he believed that the US was responsible for his being forced first from Saudi Arabi and then from Sudan. It was these actions that caused him to declare war on the US in August of 1996.

Now, none of this means that there weren't those on the fringes that already had the US in their sights, the WTC Bombing in 1993 and the Bojinka plot, along with other attacks against US Targets certainly showed that, but until 1996 Bin Laden didn't consider the US to be the main enemy. Instead, he viewed them as a corruptor but believed that if he could remove the corrupted governments, then the US influence in the Middle East would wane.

When he was shown how wrong he was after the US's power over Sudan was shown, he changed tack to attacking the US to force them out of the Middle East, because as long as they help power over the corrupt governments then his group could never remove those governments and replace them with Islamic ones.

Now again, that is not saying that anything he did after that against the US was right, it wasn't. The answer is never violence, but that goes for both sides. The US turned Bin Laden into their enemy because they were willing to support and defend governments that they saw as anti-communist and anti-fundamentalist Islam regardless of their corruption and their human rights violations. By attacking him, they turned him against them, with 9/11 being the end result. By going down that same path, attacking other groups that currently aren't interested in the US at this point, then all you end up doing is building up more anger and resentment, and in the end, it will create a new Bin Laden. And sooner or later they will once more bring that war back to the US. It simply is not a viable long-term strategy.
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Old 19th August 2021, 05:22 PM   #65
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
It's a huge mistake to label the Taliban as a whole as terrorists. To the Afghan locals Taliban means religious.
I've personally never considered the Taliban a terrorist organization in the conventional sense, though some factions do engage in terrorism, but they don't operate in the same way nor do they have the same united philosophy as Al-Qaeda, PFLP, drug cartels, etc. I just call it the biggest militia movement in the country.
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Old 19th August 2021, 05:24 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
It's a huge mistake to label the Taliban as a whole as terrorists. To the Afghan locals Taliban means religious.
I basically agree, except that I'd say the Taliban are quite familiar with terrorism as a strategy. Maybe I'd say they're terrorists, but not International Terrorists. If that makes sense.

I'd say the best use of terror tactics is to destabilize local authority and demoralize local populations. It's most effective in unstable or poorly governed regions. There, it can create opportunities for independence and self-rule. This is how the Mexican cartels effectively run their own governments over large areas of Mexico. It's how the Taliban took Afghanistan before the occupation, how they maintained a foothold during the occupation, and how they're retaking Afghanistan today.

But if there's one thing we've learned from 9/11, it's that International Terrorism is a strategic dead end. Any group that has local hegemony within their grasp would be an idiot to try to destabilize and demoralize the western societies.
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Old 19th August 2021, 05:28 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by sir drinks-a-lot View Post
The nation building concept was doomed and futile from the start. Has that ever worked anywhere?
Japan's 1947 constitution and Italy's 1947 constitution appear to be holding up. The jury is still out on Iraq's 2005 constitution.
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Old 19th August 2021, 05:31 PM   #68
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Originally Posted by Crazy Chainsaw View Post
The Taliban won because they lied they had a more effective Propaganda campaign than we did, part of the Reason we didn't do as well is they gave a more coherent message, while or message was garbled by Conspiracy theories!
When you attack the people trying to debunk the Propaganda from your enemy you give aud and comfort to the Enemy.
The Taliban are Afghanistan's Donald John Trump, they can't be Trusted.
Some might call this hubris. I call it being naive believing everyone wants to be like us if only we said the right things.
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Old 19th August 2021, 05:33 PM   #69
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I basically agree, except that I'd say the Taliban are quite familiar with terrorism as a strategy. Maybe I'd say they're terrorists, but not International Terrorists. If that makes sense.

I'd say the best use of terror tactics is to destabilize local authority and demoralize local populations. It's most effective in unstable or poorly governed regions. There, it can create opportunities for independence and self-rule. This is how the Mexican cartels effectively run their own governments over large areas of Mexico. It's how the Taliban took Afghanistan before the occupation, how they maintained a foothold during the occupation, and how they're retaking Afghanistan today.

But if there's one thing we've learned from 9/11, it's that International Terrorism is a strategic dead end. Any group that has local hegemony within their grasp would be an idiot to try to destabilize and demoralize the western societies.
Wow! We mostly agree on something.

I always thought the US made a mistake in 2001 of regime change in 2001 and simply made it known to the powers in Afghanistan that we're only gunning for Bin Laden. They can fight us to protect him

Afghanistan has always been a sinkhole for anyone and everyone who thought they could rule.
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Old 19th August 2021, 05:37 PM   #70
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Originally Posted by d4m10n View Post
Japan's 1947 constitution and Italy's 1947 constitution appear to be holding up. The jury is still out on Iraq's 2005 constitution.
Huge differences on so many levels. These were countries that wanted to be rebuilt. And Italy is a screwed up national government.
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Old 19th August 2021, 06:02 PM   #71
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
It's how the Taliban took Afghanistan before the occupation
While Afghanistan was a mess when the Taliban took over, it was not their doing that brought that about, in fact, the opposite is true. As I noted above, Kabul has never been good at projecting its power, and the same was true during and after the Afghani Civil War. This resulted in a fractured and piecemeal country that was more run by warlords who had either been gifted areas or just taking them after getting bored with the main war, knowing that no one would oppose them doing so. The Taliban arose as a result of those Warlords and their frequent abuses of the population they controlled. They came to believe that these abuses could be ended if the leaders of the country abided by the strict Islamic codes that they were being taught, and so then determined to act on it and take down those warlords, and eventually the coalition Government itself. The fractures and the discord were already there though, and have always been there. The local leaderships have always been loyal to themselves and only have given loyalty to higher leaders because their ideologies aligned. This was true when Afghanistan was a Monarchy, and also under the Taliban. It's why it will always be almost impossible to create a western-like democracy in Afghanistan.

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But if there's one thing we've learned from 9/11, it's that International Terrorism is a strategic dead end. Any group that has local hegemony within their grasp would be an idiot to try to destabilize and demoralize the western societies.
In a way it did work. Part of Bin Laden's plan was to drag the US into a war on his home turf where they could be drained and bankrupted just as has happened to the Soviets. He looked at places such as Korea, Vietnam, Lebanon, and Somalia, and thought that they could be used as a blueprint for destroying the US's economy and thus take it down. How effective that was is debatable, I think that he likely miscalculated the US's resolve and pocketbook, though some people have linked the 2008 recession to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Again those connections seem tenuous at best, so take those claims with a massive grain of salt.

But that comes back to the question is a 9/11 style attack still a viable option? If the goal is to drag the US into another war and try and harm its economy... maybe, but unlikely. If the goal is to give it a black eye in the hopes it'll back off... again unlikely. If the goal is to make a name for yourself and recruit... maybe. If the goal is to just do something in retaliation even knowing you are going to get smashed back... possibly. So I wouldn't say it was a total dead end.

Ironically I think that Iraq did more to harm Al Qaeda and take it off the board than Afghanistan did. Because AQ ended up recruiting more and more extremists as they switched their focus on Iraq and removed their resources from Afghanistan to Iraq, they opened themselves up to going from a militant group to a fundamentalist quasi-government one. AQ's goal was not to govern as the Taliban did but to overthrow governments they saw as corrupt and support those that they saw as Islamic. As their ranks filled with more fundamentalists who saw themselves as a new caliphate, they ended up imploding, and out of the mess came ISIS. Without Iraq, things would have been quite different for them.
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Old 19th August 2021, 06:34 PM   #72
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Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Huge differences on so many levels.
The question was whether rebuilding ever works. No idea when how we can tell in advance.
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Old 19th August 2021, 06:46 PM   #73
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Originally Posted by d4m10n View Post
The question was whether rebuilding ever works. No idea when how we can tell in advance.
Total industrial warfare beyond the enemy's capacity to continue, followed by unconditional surrender, military occupation, and martial law, seems to be the foundation for successful nation building.

The problem in Afghanistan seems to have started with an unwillingness to actually push the Taliban past its capacity to sustain military operations.
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Old 19th August 2021, 06:51 PM   #74
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Originally Posted by d4m10n View Post
The question was whether rebuilding ever works. No idea when how we can tell in advance.
I don't know about that. There are at least better bets from one situation to another.

I do know this, there was more than a reasonable expectation of success in Italy. Japan was maybe questionable. At least both were modern societies. With national identities. You could argue we rebuilt Germany as well. There also wasn't much internal opposition to rebuilding.in the WW2 nations.
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Old 19th August 2021, 06:51 PM   #75
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
Total industrial warfare beyond the enemy's capacity to continue, followed by unconditional surrender, military occupation, and martial law, seems to be the foundation for successful nation building.

The problem in Afghanistan seems to have started with an unwillingness to actually push the Taliban past its capacity to sustain military operations.
The most obvious difference seems to be that Japan and Germany already had functioning states that exerted a high level of authority over their citizenry, so crushing that existing state opened a vacuum for replacement. Japan and Germany weren't so much nation building than it was a change in management. No such existing organized state existed in Afghanistan. There's no Berlin or Tokyo to take, we only controlled the patch of dirt that had soldiers standing on it.

Fighting insurgency in regions with extremely tenuous national identity seems to be an entirely different sort of problem.

The fact that Afghanistan was part of a larger "Global War on Terror" shows the problem immediately. We were chasing ghosts that didn't really care about national borders the whole time that would simply evaporate whenever we got too close and bide their time until we got tired of fighting. The Taliban didn't need to hold territory or control the nation, they needed to simply stay alive and engage in harassing actions until we left.
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Old 19th August 2021, 07:07 PM   #76
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
The most obvious difference seems to be that Japan and Germany already had functioning states that exerted a high level of authority over their citizenry, so crushing that existing state opened a vacuum for replacement. Japan and Germany weren't so much nation building than it was a change in management. No such existing organized state existed in Afghanistan. There's no Berlin or Tokyo to take, we only controlled the patch of dirt that had soldiers standing on it.

Fighting insurgency in regions with extremely tenuous national identity seems to be an entirely different sort of problem.

The fact that Afghanistan was part of a larger "Global War on Terror" shows the problem immediately. We were chasing ghosts that didn't really care about national borders the whole time that would simply evaporate whenever we got too close and bide their time until we got tired of fighting. The Taliban didn't need to hold territory or control the nation, they needed to simply stay alive and engage in harassing actions until we left.
When you put it that way, I see I was wrong in my analysis. Thanks for the food for thought.
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Old 19th August 2021, 07:18 PM   #77
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
The most obvious difference seems to be that Japan and Germany already had functioning states that exerted a high level of authority over their citizenry, so crushing that existing state opened a vacuum for replacement. Japan and Germany weren't so much nation building than it was a change in management. No such existing organized state existed in Afghanistan. There's no Berlin or Tokyo to take, we only controlled the patch of dirt that had soldiers standing on it.

Fighting insurgency in regions with extremely tenuous national identity seems to be an entirely different sort of problem.

The fact that Afghanistan was part of a larger "Global War on Terror" shows the problem immediately. We were chasing ghosts that didn't really care about national borders the whole time that would simply evaporate whenever we got too close and bide their time until we got tired of fighting. The Taliban didn't need to hold territory or control the nation, they needed to simply stay alive and engage in harassing actions until we left.
German and Japan both also faced a bogeyman that the Taliban doesn't. Post war, Germany and Japan were going to be under American/West European domination, or under Soviet domination. Cooperating with the American/NATO forces ensured they stayed with the side that would eventually allow them to preserve their cultures and regain freedom and eventual sovereignty.

Afghanistan just never saw the Taliban that way - they were too Afghan to be a bogeyman to the Afghans. ISIS served as a decent bogeyman for Iraq, but didn't last long enough to force Iraq to feel the need to cleave on permanently to the American way of life.
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Old 19th August 2021, 07:42 PM   #78
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Originally Posted by d4m10n View Post
Japan's 1947 constitution and Italy's 1947 constitution appear to be holding up. The jury is still out on Iraq's 2005 constitution.

Japan and Italy already had a 'western' concept of nationhood as did Germany post WWII. Afghanistan does not and never has.
Originally Posted by acbytesla View Post
Huge differences on so many levels. These were countries that wanted to be rebuilt. And Italy is a screwed up national government.
I don't think Italy is any more 'screwed' up on a national level than a lot of countries. I wouldn't exactly brag about our own situation at the mo considering the last few years.
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Old 19th August 2021, 08:10 PM   #79
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
Some might call this hubris. I call it being naive believing everyone wants to be like us if only we said the right things.
Naive did you have an Engineering Student at Kabul University in Afghanistan constantly asking information of you to help debunk Taliban Propaganda?
You see I might know things You don't, the Taliban and other Radical Islamic groups were spreading a lot of anti Weatern Pro Islamic conspiracy theories in the early 2000s. Including the crazy Idea 9/11 was an inside job, that Jet Fuel couldn't melt steel and tons of other conspiracy theories to poorly educated Tribal regions!
The main focus of that was to undermine support for the war on terror.
Tons of Afghani people still believe either Bush or the Media Faked 9/11/2001.
It didn't help efforts having a Conspiracy theorist constantly shouting fake News while Lying all the time.
As was said in a pamphlet distributed in Afghanistan in 2018, If the Americans can't Trust their Zionist Lead (Soros Government,) How can Afghans?
An effective Propaganda campaign can sometimes win a war faster than the guns.
Also you made an assumption that I thought Afghani People wanted to be like Americans, at no time did I say that, Afghan people are mostly Sunni Muslims they will never be like Americans because they will never be Americans.
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Old 19th August 2021, 08:13 PM   #80
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Originally Posted by SuburbanTurkey View Post
The most obvious difference seems to be that Japan and Germany already had functioning states that exerted a high level of authority over their citizenry, so crushing that existing state opened a vacuum for replacement. Japan and Germany weren't so much nation building than it was a change in management. No such existing organized state existed in Afghanistan. There's no Berlin or Tokyo to take, we only controlled the patch of dirt that had soldiers standing on it.

Fighting insurgency in regions with extremely tenuous national identity seems to be an entirely different sort of problem.

The fact that Afghanistan was part of a larger "Global War on Terror" shows the problem immediately. We were chasing ghosts that didn't really care about national borders the whole time that would simply evaporate whenever we got too close and bide their time until we got tired of fighting. The Taliban didn't need to hold territory or control the nation, they needed to simply stay alive and engage in harassing actions until we left.
All they needed was the people's support, and for them not to resist.
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